Ex-officials advise PM Oli to prioritize major deals in upcoming China visit

PM 2KATHMANDU, March 14 (Xinhua) — Former officials of Nepal have advised Prime Minister Khadga Prasad Oli to give priority to concluding bilateral cooperation deals concerning trade, tourism, connectivity and transit during his upcoming visit to China.

At a meeting organized by the prime minister on Sunday evening for suggestions ahead of his China visit which begins on March 20, the former officials suggested that Nepal should give priority to developing long-term cooperation with China.

Dr. Baburam Bhattarai, a former prime minister of Nepal, emphasized the significance of seeking economic cooperation in the field of trade, infrastructure development and foreign direct investment in Nepal from China.

Madhav Prasad Ghimire, a former foreign minister, was of the view that the Nepalese leadership should talk to the Chinese side about Nepal’s need to diversify its commerce and trade.

“People have high expectations from your visit to China this time. Our trade and commerce need to be diversified as per the changed context,” Ghimire told the prime minister while giving his suggestions.

Another former foreign minister, Dr. Prakash Chandra Lohani, noted that the prime minister should make efforts towards finalizing the Transit and Transportation Agreement as well as an agreement on importing petroleum and gas.

On the occasion, another former foreign minister, Ramesh Nath Pandey, said that Nepal must focus on enhancing connectivity with China through railway and roads.

“The prime minister should think toward developing long-term cooperation with China rather than focusing on seeking support from the Chinese side in small projects which can be concluded even at the bureaucratic level,” Pandey said.

Responding to the suggestions from the former officials, the prime minister said that he wants to take bilateral relationship with China to a greater height.

“The prime minister said that his visit will be fruitful in enhancing bilateral ties. He is hopeful that this visit will add a new avenue in fostering our excellent bilateral relationship,” the prime minister’s foreign relations expert Gopal Khanal told Xinhua.

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